An Unwanted Guest by Shari Lapena
Thoughts Before Reading:
So when this book was published, I saw it constantly on Goodreads. They had a ton of book trailers, and every time I went on the site, the page would “load” and then play it.
So when I saw it at the Library, I was stoked to read it!
It sort of is a play on And Then There Were None–strangers all stuck, snowed in at a resort, and then they start dropping like flies. Which one is the killer-or is there a stranger in the resort?
Our mystery is set at the Catskills, a beautiful, remote resort.
Gwen Delaney is in Communications. She has never been able to move forward from witnessing a rape in college, and the guilt of doing nothing about it. She studied journalism, but as she could not tell truth, went a different route. Her idea was to bring her friend Riley, to the secluded resort, but now isn’t sure it is such a great idea. Could there be more to her than a sweet, innocent girl-could she have a dark side?
Riley Shuter was always the confident, brash, drop dead gorgeous girl who people loved/hated-but since she has been overseas in Iraq-she is not the same woman. She has severe PTSD, drinks far too much, and is acting strange. Could she have finally cracked?
David Paley is a defense attorney, who is taking a leave of absence. His wife was murdered, with many believing him to have done it. He was acquitted, but is he a murderer? Could someone have known something and he had to silence them?
Lauren Day and Ian Beeton are traveling for a romantic getaway. At first the two corroborate each other’s stories, but then it turns out that they aren’t each other’s perfect alibi. In fact, there are a lot that the two don’t know about each other-could one have a secret they’d kill for?
Beverly Sullivan had planned this romantic getaway for her and her husband Henry only to find out that he has a mistress. He wants the relationship to be over, but Beverly doesn’t. Could this have been a plot to stay together? To further separate? Or could this news have caused one to crack?
Dana Hart is from a poor family, but did all she could to catch a wealthy man. Matthew Hutchinson is that man, except he won’t marry her. The two have a fight-could it have been the last straw-could one have killed?
Candice White is a writer, escaping her duties of taking care of her elderly mother, to work on her book. She is very observant, watching everyone. Could she have seen something, or could there be more to her as well?
Which one, which one-or is there an unknown, “unwanted”, guest killing. Will they find out before they are all dead.
Thoughts After Reading:
I thought this was very well written. WE only know bits and pieces of each character-essentially having no clue as to who could possibly be the killer. It was so well written, but as we neared the end I began to get worried.
Everything was great up until the end. The characters, the tension, the buildup, the suspense-but then the cops finally come, are there for a little bit, and all is solved.
The only problem with giving us so little about the characters it felt as if in the end it was too quickly sewn up.
The last few pages she wrapped everything up very quickly which threw off the pacing and, in my opinion, weakened it.
Very distressing as the rest if the book was fantastic.
For more mysteries not in a series, go to Pieces of Her
For more romantic getaways that turn to murder, go to Murder on Ice